The U.S. government said Wednesday that traces of radiation have been found in milk in Washington state, but said the amounts are far too low to trigger any public-health concern.
The Environmental Protection Agency said a March 25 sample of milk produced in the Spokane, Wash., area contained a 0.8 pico curies per literlevel of iodine-131, which it said was less than one five-thousandth of the safety safety guideline set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The EPA said it increased monitoring after radiation leaked from Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. It expects more such findings in coming days, but in amounts 'far below levels of public-health concern, including for infants and children.'
Iodine-131 has a half-life of about eight days, meaning levels should fade quickly. 'These findings are a minuscule amount compared to what people experience every day,' the agency said.
For example, a person would be exposed to low levels of radiation on a round trip cross country flight, watching television, and even from construction materials,' Patricia Hansen, an FDA senior scientist, said in a written statement distributed by the EPA late Wednesday.
The FDA last week said it will block imports of Japanese milk products and certain other foods produced in the area around the Fukushima nuclear facility because of concerns about radiation contamination.
An EPA spokesman said that while the agency isn't certain that the iodine-131 found in the sampled milk came from Fukushima, its discovery is 'consistent with' what the agency knows has been released so far from the damaged nuclear reactors there.
'We know we don't normally see iodine-131 in milk. We know there's been an incident where it's been released,' the spokesman said. 'And now we're seeing it.'
Dairy industry officials stressed that products remained safe.
牛奶生产商协会（Milk Producers Council）是美国加州南部和中部奶牛场的行业组织，该机构总经理范登霍伊维尔（Rob Vandenheuvel）说，对奶牛场场主和奶制品公司来说，维护消费者安全是第一要务，EPA和FDA周三的报告证实，食用和饮用美国的奶制品依然是安全的。他说，我们承认美国消费者有这方面的担心，美国乳业将继续与联邦和州政府相关机构密切合作，以确保我们能维持安全的牛奶供应。
'Consumer safety is the highest priority for dairy farmers and dairy foods companies, and today's report by EPA and FDA confirms that our nation's dairy products continue to be safe to eat and drink,' said Rob Vandenheuvel, general manager of the Ontario, Calif.-based Milk Producers Council, which represents dairies in Southern and Central California. 'We recognize the concerns of our consumers, and the U.S. dairy industry will continue to work closely with federal and state government agencies to ensure that we maintain a safe milk supply.'
2011-04-02 14:05 编辑：icetonado